Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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Feds sell multibillion-dollar stake in GM


April 7, 2015
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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Apr. 7, 2015 – The federal government has unloaded its remaining multibillion-dollar stake in General Motors, which equals to nearly 73.4 million shares, in an unregistered block trade to Goldman, Sachs & Co., yesterday.

The government’s stake in the automaker was worth more than $3.3 billion, but it said it is unclear how much the sale will benefit Ottawa’s bottom line.

According to The Canadian Press, the sell-off comes as the Conservative government searches for ways to live up to its election-year promise to balance its books in 2015-16, a long-running pledge that appeared at risk of remaining unfulfilled amid the negative economic impacts of the global oil slump.

The sale also comes only a few days after the start of the 2015-16 fiscal year, which means proceeds from the sale will boost
the budget’s bottom line.

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In a statement, Joe Oliver, finance minister, said the sale means GM has returned to private-sector ownership and taxpayers are no longer exposed to the market.

“Our investment in GM was always meant to be temporary,” Oliver said. “We never believed the government should be a shareholder of a private sector company for an indefinite period of time.”

— With files from Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press